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Khadija now has a dream

© UNICEF/2013/Kibria
Khadiza with her classmates in front of Grade I classroom

By Mohammad Golam Kibria

Satkhira, 27 February 2013: Khadija, a six-year-old girl, is now enrolled in Grade I of 19 Bangshipur Golam Rahman Registered Government Primary School of Shyamnagar Upazila after completing one year pre-primary education (PPE). Khadiza shares her dream, saying, “I am happy to be enrolled in school. After completing my education, I want to be like our PPE apa (sister and class teacher).”

But her life has not been an easy ride so far as fate played a cruel game with her. She lives with her grandparents as both parents left her as an orphan. Her father died when she was only three-month-old and mother left when she was five. Her grandparents are taking care of her with their meagre earning. Her grandfather is a rickshaw-van puller and grandmother works as a domestic help.

While talking to her grandfather, he said, “As she enrolled and completed the pre-primary education free of cost, we could realise the value of education and enrolled her at primary school. She is now a very happy girl, well disciplined, knows how to be clean and also teaches us about health and hygiene which she learnt at her class. It is then we understood the importance of education for children like Khadija.” He also committed to support the continuation of Khadija’s education as long as they can afford it. 

© UNICEF/2013/Kibria
Khadija with her grandparents infront of their house
Khadiza is one of the 30 students who got the opportunity to complete one year pre-primary education service delivered by BRAC with funding from UNICEF. She was seen along with her three friends (Rehana, Sonia and Asha) at the Grade I classroom. She expressed her happiness at being able to attend school with friends. Khadija receives a stipend amounting to Taka 100 per month from the school as part of Government Stipend Programme for the students of hardcore poor families. NGO partner BRAC will continue to follow up on the education of status of Khadija and other children like her so that they can at least complete the primary education cycle.

Pre-primary education is preparing children with a strong foundation in early learning in order to enhance school readiness and enable children to become long term learners in the primary education system. It is expected that the learners will complete the full cycle of primary education.

With funding from Findel Family through German National Committee, UNICEF along with BRAC as a partner is delivering pre-primary education service in Satkhira to complement government efforts to ensure full coverage.    



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